Vietnam suspends helicopter tours after deadly crash

By Anh Minh   April 5, 2023 | 08:49 pm PT
Vietnam suspends helicopter tours after deadly crash
A pilot carries tourists to visit Da Nang on a helicopter in May 2022. Photo by VnExpress/Nguyen Dong
Helicopter tours across Vietnam have been suspended until further notice following a crash near Ha Long Bay on Wednesday that killed four people and left one missing.

Dinh Viet Thang, head of the Civil Aviation Authority of Vietnam (CAAV), confirmed this information with VnExpress on Thursday.

The move comes after a tourist helicopter carrying four tourists crashed on Wednesday evening at the border of Quang Ninh Province, home to the world-famous Ha Long Bay, and Hai Phong City.

Rescuers have found the body of the pilot and three tourists by Thursday morning.

The state-owned Northern Vietnam Helicopter Company offers aerial helicopter tours in Ha Long Bay, Da Nang, Vung Tau, Mai Chau, Mu Cang Chai and Dien Bien.

A helicopter tour to watch Ha Long Bay from above is one of most luxurious travel experiences in Vietnam.

A 10-minute tour costs around VND2.4 million ($102.34) per person.

People taking off from the Tuan Chau helipad can see Thien Cung Cave, Ti Top Island and other islets.

A 15-minute trip for VND3.6 million takes tourists over Thien Cung Cave, Trong Mai Islet, Sung Sot Cave, Ti Top Island, Bai Chay Bridge and Rieu Island.

A 30-minute jaunt, the most popular, costs VND7.35 million ($321).

UNESCO world heritage site Ha Long Bay, a four-hour drive east of Hanoi, is famous for its limestone karst mountains rising out of emerald waters and was voted among the world’s seven new natural wonders by Swiss Organization New Open World in 2011.

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